Past Present Episode 131
Past Present Episode 129
In this episode, Niki, Neil, and Natalia debate the White House Correspondents’ Dinner, the Golden State Killer, and the news that Americans are forgetting the Holocaust.
Past Present Episode 124
In this week’s episode, Neil, Natalia, and Niki debate the historical significance of Cambridge Analytica and its relationship with Facebook, a serial bomber in Austin, and an all-white, all-male history conference at Stanford.
Past Present Episode 123
In this episode, Niki, Natalia, and Neil debate Donald Trump’s firing of Rex Tillerson, the New York Times publishing obituaries for women it overlooked historically, and National Geographic’s self-study of its past racist coverage.
Al Jazeera and the problems of media today
How do you show people’s words?
One of the most interesting problems posed by centralized media and journalism is the problem of authorship. Any news item bears traces of the organizational processes it went through. These processes involve various interventions, by different actors. In a sense they are no less collective than those processes that add up to scientific discoveries. In both cases the notion of “authorship” is misleadingly individualistic.
Take the extreme case of op-eds. Op-eds come with an identifiable author’s signature. They are supposedly characterized by the existence of a simple, indictable origin. Does it mean they were not co-produced by the publishing organization? Does it mean they were not edited by the organization either politely through an exchange of letters and suggestions, or forcibly, through cuts, re-phrasings, and imposed titles? This may be done in the name of clarity. Yet many op-ed authors are extremely lucid writers and need no help in achieving clarity. …
Letters from The New School for Social Research
Here are two remembrances of a distinguished colleague, Jonathan Schell, who died last Tuesday. Miller wrote his as a letter to the members of the Committee on Liberal Studies, where Schell once taught. Matynia’s is a remembrance of Schell’s public engagements as a writer and public actor, often contributing to the work of the Transregional Center for Democratic Studies.
I learned today of the death of Jonathan Schell, a friend and former colleague.
It is not widely known, but Jonathan was instrumental in the transformation of liberal studies at the NSSR in the 1990s.
Over lunch one day in 1994, Jonathan expressed his interest in teaching — and also expressed his frustration that most veteran journalists are able only to teach in journalism schools. …